Dreamwidth volunteers are going through the back entries of LiveJournal suggestions, mining it for all the interesting and fun ideas that LJ users have wanted for the LJ codebase over the years. Dreamwidth developers are looking at all the interesting and fun possibilities to run, to see what can be done, without having to worry about disrupting ten years of LJ and breaking things that already exist. Dreamwidth is starting from the ground up, and doesn't have to worry too much about the years upon years of data.
The thing that makes my eyes fill with tears of glee is watching the back-and-forth between people working on LJ and the people working on DW. It seems like people developing for DW are getting stuff done that's been wanted for LJ, and there are things that got developed by LJ developers that DW needed done. Not everything is going to be intercompatible, and not everything is going to be able to be shared, but the beauty of Open Source is that so very much of it will be. So much of what LJ and DW developers do is going to be for the common good of everyone using the shared codebase, no matter what clone or fork they're on.
I get excited about feature development. I get this incredible kick out of watching people come up with ideas, non-technical people flailing around in memespace looking for the words to describe what it is that they want to have happen, and then having actual features honed out of it and developed. There's this almost telepathic jolt as I try to fit my mind around what it is that they're trying to say and get it. Once the community figures out what we want and whether it would break anything physically or socially if it were implemented, in an ideal world the developers would take over and it would happen. Two teams of developers working on the same general codebase make this so much more likely.
In IRC, I watch developers collaborate and learn and make stuff happen. It's a thing of beauty. Features to the people, baby, features to the people.